The second installment of McMillan’s Herringford and Watts Mysteries finds Jem married to Ray but it seems that the honeymoon may be over. Oh, they are still in love but pressure from Ray’s long hours at work, not enough money to meet their needs, and Ray’s determination to take care of his sister and nephew has taken its toll. And now that they are married, Ray seems equally determined to protect Jem much to her dismay. Not only that but a new client has upset Merinda’s usual composure.
As in the first novel of the series, I found the dialogue to be witty. The quotations at the beginning of each chapter and the footnotes often added just the right touch, especially the quotations from Benny and Jonathan’s handbook. I personally found them quite eloquent. As other reviewers have mentioned, I liked seeing the personal growth of the primary characters but also sympathized with Ray and Jem’s communication problems. I also found it very natural to have two such good friends with only one of them a believer yet also could see some progress being made in that area.
Then there was the plot. Although not quite as mysterious as the first novel, “A Lesson in Love and Murder” was very action-packed with danger at every corner. The mystery itself was more in the line of proving who was behind the death and destruction that followed the team from Toronto to Chicago. I enjoyed the introduction of Benny the Mounty but felt sorry for Jasper as he watched Merinda’s reaction to Benny.
I thoroughly enjoyed another encounter with those endearing bachelor girls and can’t wait to join them on their next adventure. I love the unique yet somehow old-fashioned approach this author has taken with this series.
A digital copy of this book was provided for review by Howard Books through NetGalley.
I later purchased a print copy.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
From political danger to personal drama, life is about to get explosive…
The legacy of literary icon Sherlock Holmes is alive and well in 1912 Canada, where best friends Merinda Herringford and Jem Watts continue to develop their skills as consulting detectives.
The city of Toronto has been thrown into upheaval by the arrival of radical anarchist Emma Goldman. Amid this political chaos, Benny Citrone of the Royal North-West Mounted Police arrives at Merinda and Jem’s flat, requesting assistance in locating his runaway cousin—a man with a deadly talent.
While Merinda eagerly accepts the case, she finds herself constantly butting heads—and hearts—with Benny. Meanwhile, Jem has her hands full with a husband who is determined to keep her out of harm’s way.
As Merinda and Jem close in on the danger they’ve tracked from Toronto to Chicago, they uncover a sinister plot to assassinate presidential candidate Theodore Roosevelt. Will they be able to save the day and resolve the troubles threatening their future happiness before it’s too late?
Independence, love, and lives are at stake in A Lesson in Love and Murder, the gripping second installment of the Herringford and Watts Mysteries series.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Rachel McMillan is a keen history enthusiast and a lifelong bibliophile. When not writing or reading, she can most often be found drinking tea and watching British miniseries. Rachel lives in bustling Toronto, where she works in educational publishing and pursues her passion for art, literature, music, and theater.